How to Choose a Radiologic Technician Degree Program near Sherman Oaks California
Best wishes regarding your decision to enroll in an x-ray tech school near Sherman Oaks CA so you can become a radiology technologist. And now that you have made a decision to enter the gratifying field of healthcare, exactly how do you undertake choosing the ideal college and program so that you will obtain the proper training to become a skilled professional? And since the majority of states do require that radiology techs become licensed, depending on where you ultimately work you may require preparation to pass a licensing exam. So it’s imperative that you assess each of the colleges you are looking at so that you can evaluate each program. Many prospective students begin by looking for colleges or technical schools that are within driving distance of their residences. Next, they compare tuition and typically settle on the lowest cost. But while cost and location need to be considered, there are other significant qualifiers as well. For instance, you should ask whether or not the radiology tech schools have earned accreditation, or if they sponsor internships. These questions and others you should ask the colleges you are evaluating are provided later in this post. But first, let’s explore what a radiologic technician does and the credentials and education options that are offered.
X-Ray Technician Occupation Summary
There are multiple professional titles for x-ray techs (technicians or technologists). They can also be called radiologic technicians or technologists, radiology technicians or radiographers. No matter what the name, they all have the same fundamental job description, which is to use imaging machines to internally view patients for the objective of diagnosis and treatment. A number of radiologic technologists may also administer radiation therapy for the treatment of cancer. Many elect to practice as generalists, while others may choose a specialty, such as mammography. They may practice in Sherman Oaks CA hospitals, clinics, family practices or outpatient diagnostic imaging centers. The imaging technologies that an X-Ray technician may utilize include:
- Traditional and specialized X-Rays
- Computerized tomography (CT) or “CAT” scans
- Magnetic resonance imaging (MRI)
- Sonography or ultrasound
Radiographers have to take care of their equipment and also regularly assess its performance and safety. They are also required to retain in-depth records of each of their diagnostic procedures. As Sherman Oaks CA medical practitioners, they must adhere to a code of conduct and a high professional standard.
Radiology Tech Degrees Available
The standard prerequisite for attending a radiology tech school is to have attained a high school diploma or GED. Radiologic technologist students have the opportunity to earn either an Associate or a Bachelor’s Degree. An Associate Degree, which is the most prevalent among techs, usually requires 18 months to 2 years to finish based upon the course load and program. A Bachelor’s Degree will take more time at up to 4 years to complete and is more comprehensive in nature. The majority of students choose a degree major in Radiography, but there are other related majors that are appropriate also. Something to consider is that Sherman Oaks CA radiographer colleges have a clinical training or lab component as part of their course of study. It can typically be satisfied by taking part in an internship or externship program which many schools offer through local clinics and hospitals in their region. Once you have graduated from any of the degree programs, you must comply with any certification or licensing requirements in California or the state you will be practicing in as applicable.
X-Ray Tech Certification and Licensing
After you have graduated from an X-Ray tech program, based on the state where you will be practicing you may need to be licensed. Most states do require licensing, and their requirements differ so check with your state. Currently, all states that do require licensing will recognize The American Registry of Radiologic Technologists (ARRT) certification examination for the purpose of licensing, but several accept other alternatives for testing also. Several states also call for certification as a component of the licensing procedure, otherwise it is voluntary. However, numerous Sherman Oaks CA employers prefer to hire radiology techs that are certified so it might enhance your career options to become certified. ARRT’s certification program involves graduation from an approved program as well as a passing score on their comprehensive exam. ARRT also demands re-certification every two years, which may be met with 24 credits of continuing ed, or by passing an exam.
Online Radiology Technician Programs
As a part of any degree program, x-ray tech schools will have practical or lab training included in their curriculum. This is no different for online degree schools. So although you can still earn your degree online, a considerable portion of the training will be fulfilled either in a college lab or in an externship off-campus. Clinical training is usually performed in regional hospitals, outpatient clinics or private practices in sponsorship with the schools. But the online portion of the training can be attended in the privacy of your Sherman Oaks CA home. Students who keep working while earning their degree often discover that the online approach to learning is much more convenient with their busy schedules. Plus online colleges are frequently less expensive than conventional options. Along with lower tuition, expenses for study materials and commuting may be reduced as well. But just make sure that the online school you select is accredited (more on the advantages of accreditation later). So if you are dedicated enough to learn with this less structured type of training, then an online degree may be the best option for you.
Questions to Ask X Ray Tech Colleges
As soon as you have decided on the kind of degree that you want to earn, you can start the process of searching for and evaluating Sherman Oaks CA x-ray technician schools. You will also need to decide if you prefer to attend online classes or travel to a local campus. If you choose the latter, then obviously the location of the college will be important. The cost of tuition and supplementary expenses will be a determining variable also. But along with cost and location, what more should you factor in when comparing schools? Well, you should ask if the schools are accredited, and if they sponsor externship or internship programs. To help you find out some of these important details prior to making your decision, we have put together a list of questions that you need to ask the schools you are looking at.
Are the X-Ray Technician Schools Accredited? A large number of xray tech colleges have obtained some form of accreditation, whether national or regional. Even so, it’s still crucial to verify that the program and school are accredited. Among the most highly regarded accrediting organizations in the field of radiology is the Joint Review Committee on Education in Radiologic Technology (JRCERT). Schools earning accreditation from the JRCERT have gone through an extensive examination of their instructors and educational materials. If the college is online it can also earn accreditation from the Distance Education and Training Council, which targets distance or online learning. All accrediting organizations should be acknowledged by the U.S. Department of Education or the Council on Higher Education Accreditation. Besides guaranteeing a quality education, accreditation will also help in acquiring financial assistance and student loans, which are frequently not available for non-accredited schools. Accreditation might also be a pre-requisite for licensing and certification as required. And a number of Sherman Oaks CA employers will only hire a graduate of an accredited school for entry-level openings.
Are Internships Provided? Ask if the California xray tech programs you are reviewing have relationships with regional clinics or hospitals for internship programs. Internships are not only a terrific means to get hands on training in a clinical environment, they are also a means to fulfill the clinical training requirement for most programs. As a supplemental benefit, they can help students and graduates establish professional relationships in the Sherman Oaks CA medical community and assist with obtaining employment.
Is Job Placement Assistance available? You will most likely wish to secure employment quickly after graduation, but finding that initial job in a new profession can be challenging without support. Find out if the x-ray tech programs you are interviewing have job assistance programs and what their success rates are. Rapid and high placement rates are an excellent indication that the schools have substantial networks and great relationships with Sherman Oaks CA healthcare employers. It also substantiates that their graduates are highly regarded and in demand.
Where is the College Located? For many students, the college they choose will have to be within driving distance of their Sherman Oaks CA residence. Those who have chosen to attend online classes naturally will not have to worry themselves with the location of the campus. However, the availability of local internships will be of importance. One thing to keep in mind is that if you decide to enroll in a program that is out of state or even out of your local area, you may be required to pay a higher tuition. State colleges commonly charge higher tuitions for out of state residents. And community colleges usually charge a higher tuition to those students that live outside of their districts.
How Large are the Classes ? Unless you are the type of person that likes to sit far in the rear of class or hide in the crowd, you will undoubtedly prefer a smaller class size. Smaller classes permit more individual participation and one-on-one instruction. Ask the Sherman Oaks CA schools you are researching what the typical student to teacher ratio is for their classes. If practical you may want to monitor one or more classes before making your final determination. This will also give you an opportunity to speak with several of the instructors and students to get their perspectives regarding the radiology tech program also.
Does the Program Accommodate your Schedule? And last you need to confirm that the radiographer program you finally choose can offer the class schedule you need. This is especially crucial if you opt to continue working while you attend school. If you need to schedule evening or weekend classes in Sherman Oaks CA, make certain that they are offered. If you can only enroll on a part-time basis, verify if that is an alternative and how many courses or credit hours you would have to enroll in. Also, find out what the procedure is for making up any classes that you might miss as a result of illness, work or family obligations.
Why Did You Decide to Become an Xray Technician?When getting ready to interview for an X-Ray Tech job, it's a good idea to reflect on questions you could be asked. Among the questions that hiring managers often ask radiographer applicants is "What compelled you to pick radiography as a career?". What the interviewer is hoping to discover is not only the personal reasons you might have for being an X-Ray tech, but additionally what qualities and skills you have that make you exceptional at what you do. You will undoubtedly be asked questions pertaining exclusively to radiography, in addition to a certain number of standard interview questions, so you need to prepare several strategies about how you would like to address them. Considering there are so many factors that go into selecting a career, you can respond to this primary question in a multitude of ways. When formulating an answer, try to include the reasons the profession appeals to you as well as the abilities you have that make you an outstanding X-Ray tech and the ideal choice for the position. Don't make an effort to memorize an answer, but write down several concepts and anecdotes that pertain to your personal experiences and strengths. Reviewing sample answers can assist you to prepare your own thoughts, and inspire ideas of what to discuss to wow the interviewer.
Select the Ideal X-Ray Technician College near Sherman Oaks CA
Enrolling in the right x-ray technician degree program is a crucial first step toward beginning a rewarding new career furnishing diagnostic medical services to patients. The ideal radiologic technologist should be in good physical condition. Radiology techs frequently stand for the greater part of the workday and position and sometimes lift the patient to get the correct image. Prospects must also demonstrate a capability to pay strict attention to detail and to follow the safety guidelines developed to protect both the medical team and the patient. X-Ray techs work very closely with patients, other techs as well as the radiologists and other doctors. Having interpersonal skills is a must in order to have a pleasant work environment and deliver the best available care to patients. As we have discussed in this report, there are a number of questions that you should ask each college you are reviewing prior to making your ultimate selection. This is equally true whether you decide on an online program or commute to classes on campus. By asking the appropriate questions you can analyze and compare each program so you can focus your choices and make your decision. And with the right training and your dedication to be successful, you can realize your goal to practice as a x-ray tech in Sherman Oaks CA.
Some Background on Sherman Oaks California
Sherman Oaks, Los Angeles
Sherman Oaks is a neighborhood in the San Fernando Valley region of Los Angeles, California, founded in 1927 with boundary changes afterward. The neighborhood includes a portion of the Santa Monica Mountains, which gives Sherman Oaks a lower population density than some other areas in Los Angeles.
A partner of the Los Angeles Suburban Homes Company, Gen. Moses Hazeltine Sherman, developed Sherman Oaks. The company had subdivided 1,000 acres (400 ha) of land that would become Sherman Oaks. In 1927 each acre was sold for $780. Sherman's other major venture was the Los Angeles Pacific Railroad.
In 1991, a group of homeowners living in the Chandler Estates area successfully petitioned former Los Angeles City Councilmember Zev Yaroslavsky to re-draw the boundaries of Sherman Oaks from Magnolia to Burbank Blvd to the north, and from Coldwater Canyon to Van Nuys Blvd to the west, with the goal of including their neighborhood. This request was not anything new to the San Fernando Valley; other neighborhoods had either sought to change their names, or sought to attach themselves onto more affluent neighborhoods to escape from what they saw as growing urban blight and the collapse of their social status. Residents in the area argued, however, that the area was originally part of Sherman Oaks, but was labeled Van Nuys instead through the creation of ZIP codes in 1962; some residents were able to produce a few property deeds to present their case.
Just a few weeks after the Chandler Estates area successfully seceded from Van Nuys, Magnolia Woods, a 45 block area bordered by Van Nuys Boulevard on the east and the San Diego Freeway on the west, and between Burbank and Magnolia Boulevards, also successfully petitioned Los Angeles City council member Marvin Braude to secede from Van Nuys and join Sherman Oaks. Petitioners in the area argued that their neighborhood was also part of Sherman Oaks, though they were only able to produce 22 deeds showing so. As a result of this change, Van Nuys Middle School became separated from its namesake neighborhood.
Finally, in 2009, the Los Angeles City council voted to redraw neighborhood boundaries again to allow an area of about 1,800 homes in Van Nuys to be included. This proposal attracted criticism from locals.
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